Texas Lawmakers Clash Over Healthcare Rights For Transgender Kids

On Thursday, dozens of supporters and opponents of a bill that would prohibit gender-affirming care for transgender Texas minors gathered in the Senate State Affairs Committee hearing, which lasted several hours and featured frequently passionate remarks from both witnesses and lawmakers.

Sen. Donna Campbell, R-New Braunfels, proposed SB 14, which would forbid medical professionals from performing “procedures and treatments for gender transitioning, gender reassignment” on minors under 18. According to the bill, such treatment entails hormone therapy, surgical procedures, and medications that prevent puberty.

Emergency room physician Campbell claimed that her legislation is intended to safeguard Texas children who are at risk. During the hearing, Campbell argued that our kids needed therapy and love instead of knives and drugs.

Texas Lawmakers Clash Over Healthcare Rights For Transgender Kids

If SB 14 is passed, one parent with a transgender daughter worries that her daughter won’t be able to continue receiving the necessary healthcare for her transition. She went to a rally for LGBTQ+ rights on Thursday at the Capitol. She will suffer an effect and suffer harm. Her typical childhood will vanish, the mother warned at the rally.

Campbell, however, expressed worry during the committee hearing about parents and doctors making critical decisions for their children that those children might regret. Who will look after the populace if they choose to regress? For their detransition, who is present? No one,” she remarked.

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The senator cited instances like Prisha Mosley’s, a Michigan woman visiting various state legislatures to share her story. Mosley claimed that while dealing with several mental health diagnoses as a teenager, she was under pressure to transition to the opposite gender. She is returning to the gender assigned to her at birth as she gets older.

Dr. John Carlo, a board member of the Texas Medical Association, testified before the committee on behalf of the association and took no position on the legislation. Still, he informed lawmakers that cases like Mosley’s are incredibly uncommon.

“Gender detransitioning is very, very rare. And we’ve seen it as low as 1%. And in Texas, when you talk to our Texas physicians that have been involved in gender dysphoria, and gender care — many of them, none of their patients that have had problems with detransitioning,” he said.

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Carlo also expressed worry about elements that might affect physicians, such as the requirement to revoke a medical license for breaking the potential law. Overall, the doctor emphasized how crucial it was to approach this situation cautiously.

“This is a vulnerable population of patients, which makes the relationship between the patient and the physician even more important,” he said. “As physicians, our goal is to treat our patients with the best medical judgment using the best medical evidence available. This includes evaluation of best practices in mental care and continued study and evaluation.”

Legislators questioned Carlo’s impartiality on the bill in light of his testimony. TMA had previously opposed prohibiting care for children that are gender-affirming. The State Affairs committee has not yet concluded SB 14.

After Texas Rent Relief Shutdown, Renter’s “Crisis”

Texas closed rent relief applications 52 hours after opening them due to high demand. The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs reported over 100,000 Texas Rent Relief program applications on the first day. This week saw the most applications in a day, 20,000. Within one day, “requests for assistance far exceeded available funding.” As of March 16 at 11:59 a.m., the portal is closed.

“It’s disappointing, but not surprising,” said Ben Martin, the research director at Texas Housers. “There’s an incredible, extraordinary need for assistance from renters in the state of Texas right now. We’ve seen evictions rising throughout 2022 and into 2023. Renters are really experiencing a crisis right now.”


As they start to distribute the restricted funds, TDHCA will prioritize tenants facing eviction. Martin cites studies showing only one affordable housing option for every four renters with meager incomes.

“That’s a deficit of 75% of what we need,” he said. “For very low-income renters making about 50% of area median income, there’s less than one unit available for every two households looking for them.”

The TDHCA, closing the portal will speed up staff evaluation of applications and funding distribution. The department advises those who face eviction to seek legal counsel in the interim. They offered Texas Law Help as a no-cost or inexpensive lawful representation source.

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